Making Room for God and His Church Day 5: Reignition
Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. (Mark 16:15, ESV)
Preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. (2 Timothy 4:2, ESV)
And I pray that the sharing of your faith may become effective for the full knowledge of every good thing that is in us for the sake of Christ. (Philemon 1:6, ESV)
Growing up, and all the way until the Covid era, we would go to weekend Bible conferences from time to time. These were weekends spent with other Christians who shared our faith, learning from various speakers, and spending time enjoying fellowship. There was always lots of food and lots of great conversations. These came to a screeching halt a few years back, but they are slowly beginning to gain momentum again in my circle of faith.
What I loved most about these weekends was that they sparked a fire in our coasting souls, reigniting our faith and refreshing us as we moved forward. The reason these events were reoccurring is obvious: we fall into the habit of mediocre Christianity and find ourselves often needing refreshment in spirit. We get busy, and the busier we get, the more our faith loses its punch. The outcome? We lose our passion in serving Christ and plugging into the needs of our local church.
So what ignites your faith? For some, it’s extended time in prayer and reading God’s Word. It’s a great start, for sure. We can’t expect to feel inspired in our Christian walk without these necessary components. Sometimes, it’s a sermon we hear that deeply challenges us and prompts us to change. Maybe it’s a conversation with a close friend who has an interest in our spiritual growth and development. Or perhaps it’s a close call of not toeing the line and then finding ourselves in trouble. Moments like these can pull us one way or the other; how encouraging it is, though, when we see them as an opportunity for correction and renewed vigor in our service to Christ.
One point we’ve revisited often in this study is accountability. While it’s true that we are accountable before the body of Christ, we also must remember we will give an account of our faith journey to our heavenly Father. How tragic it would be to stand before Him, knowing we did little in our service for Him and lacked the self-discipline to make corrections for the better along our Christian walk. May this sobering thought be the catalyst we all need for taking inventory of our spiritual journey. We will never, no matter how long our short lives are, reach a spiritual peak that leaves no room for improvement.
My challenge to each of us today (myself included) is to look for areas that need work, then set goals and ignite your desire to reach them. When we think about weight loss, we see the struggle between healthy food choices and giving into cravings for French fries, chocolate cake, pizza, or whatever your weakness may be. It’s hard to stay on track, but what motivates you to hop back on the wagon and make better decisions for your health? Often, it’s an old picture of you from a few years back, reminding you that you can achieve the goal because you’ve been healthier previously. Other times, it may be a health scare that prompts change in our exercise and food choices. Just as we find that one thing that spurs us along in something like losing weight, find out what challenges you most spiritually, and use it as your motivator.
The more we surround ourselves with people who inspire our faith, the more we will have a desire to follow suit. The more we saturate our minds with God’s Word, including in our music choices, the more His presence will be felt in our lives, leading us to growth and development. If we want to experience spiritual reignition, we will have to move from a place of stagnation to a desire for change. Sometimes, we are whacked over the head with something big that gets our attention and shakes us from our state of coasting. But most of the time, we will need to place ourselves in situations that challenge and inspire us.
Just recently, we celebrated Easter—a time of remembrance. We remember Christ’s death on Good Friday, and His resurrection on Sunday. This religious holiday centers on the sacrifice of Jesus and His miraculous power over death and the grave, rising from the dead and bringing us everlasting hope through His finished work—rescuing us from sin, death and hell. Taking time to reflect on His suffering should be part of our everyday journey with Christ. In doing so, how can we not have a desire to love and serve Him with everything in us? The cost He paid for our redemption was so great and, to be honest, my service is so small in comparison. May we all go forward with renewed zeal in our service for Him, willing to do our part within the Body of Christ out of love, not duty. Is He worthy? How would you answer that?